Despite parents’ best efforts at keeping kids’ teeth healthy, Kevin Bass DMD Cosmetic and Family Dentistry treats decay in young patients commonly.
Brushing may not be enough
Most of these children report that they brush their teeth every day. Clearly, they either aren’t brushing as often as they think they are. Or they’re not doing it correctly.
Besides brushing, what else can parents do to protect children from decay?
Here are 5 vital tools for preventing cavities in young kids and teenagers.
In today’s post, we focus on oral rinses.
What is a children’s oral rinse?
Though they look like mouthwash, oral rinses are designed to prevent cavities. They contain fluoride.
How does a child use an oral anti-cavity rinse?
Oral rinses work best when youth swish and spit after they brush and floss. Instead of “gargling” like you do with mouthwash, you “swish” and spit them out.
During the day, teeth are assaulted by acids and sugar in foods and beverages. These substances soften enamel. Fluoride strengthens enamel.
The rinse should be the last liquid to make contact with teeth before bed. This helps tooth enamel re-mineralize during sleep.
Oral rinses and fluoride supplements have different purposes
Is your son or daughter taking fluoride supplements? Does that mean an oral rinse is unnecessary? Actually, no. Fluoride supplements help strengthen teeth that are still forming. A fluoride rinse helps teeth that have already come in.
How do I choose an oral rinse for my child?
Make sure you pick one specifically developed for children. Products labeled as a mouthwash may not contain fluoride and they probably contain alcohol.
If you have toddlers, keep oral rinses locked away or otherwise inaccessible. Though they are safe when used as directed for older children (or when supervised for younger children), a toddler may be tempted to drink them. They are not supposed to be swallowed. Fluoride poisoning is dangerous.